The American disagreement
The Second World War ended with the era of the American dominance. This dominance was an extension of Western Imperialism.
The colonial period gradually came to an end starting from 1945. The European powers saw the American hegemony as an opportunity instead of a threat, because the alternative was Soviet aggression in the East.
The US taking advantage of their superior size, geography and economic drive, was able to establish itself as the superpower.
But in the words of Naom Chomsky, the Americans became what he calls, “the godfather” of the world.
And this “godfather” was to lead the Mafia which consisted of mainly the Western powers and Israel in the Middle East.
From that point onwards, the Americans have dictated their foreign policy like a crime boss. The 60s, 70s and then the 80s saw the height of this approach.
But in these decades, the presence of the Soviet Union diluted US power in many areas. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the American power knew no bounds.
The godfather of the world became all in all, any disagreement with Washington meant utter destruction through isolation, violence and coordinated action from allied countries.
But all that is changing and the godfather is now in a losing position, there are many disagreements with the American foreign policy and the peace of the world is at stake.
As two countries with a nuclear arsenals, massive militaries and economic ties across the globe, go head to head, is there a chance for a better tomorrow in the face of disagreement with the declining American power in the world?
Europe and the UK have been passive bystanders to American dominance. The Americans effectively control the United Nations dnd Europe does not disagree.
The Americans violated United Nations Security Council many a times but Western powers tolerated it, and countries like United Kingdom even joined in, only because of the protection and economic boons they receive from Americans in return.
The Americans have treated Asia and Africa as their playgrounds. They have actively interfered through their economic policies and military strategies to disrupt any regime in Asia or Africa that goes against the will of Washington.
Africa was pre-dominantly left for exploitation by Europe, owing to their reconstruction needs after the World War-II, while Asia, and South East Asia in particular was left to be used against the Russians.
But China became as exception in all of this. Not understanding the historical richness and the sheer size of China, the Americans miscalculated and in just in a few decades, China is now challenging the status quo.
And this is the new disagreement with the godfather of the world. And in the words of Naom Chomsky, China is doing what no other nation has been able to do, to defeat the Americans in the free market and have the capacity to develop through peace, development and investment.
This is directly challenging the power of the US around the world, and it is one power that is not bending the knee to the old godfather.
The Mafia is consequently up and running a campaign once again. The Americans have grown accustomed to saying no to dialogue, diplomacy and negotiation.
From a background check, it is clear what the US has done to any nation or person who have acted against her wishes.
Saddam Hussain was one of the most trusted allies of the US and all of a sudden, President Bush branded him as the enemy.
Saddam’s efforts to negotiate a deal were rejected and Iraq was invaded on a false pretext. Military and brute force were put into action instead of diplomacy.
Similarly, in case of Gaddafi, massive funds were put into causing disruption and regime change that led to death of Gaddafi as the country spiralled into chaos.
Obama together with European leaders was able to secure a nuclear disarmament deal with Iran which was cancelled by the Republican leader Donald Trump.
The godfather does not negotiate. The Europeans even though appalled by the decision, obediently followed the instructions.
Similarly, in the case of Israel, where there were forceful talks to de-nuclearisation of the Middle East, the Americans fully supported the Israel aggression in Palestine and ignored the fact that Israel possessed nuclear weapons which were against the non-proliferation program.
The Americans have dealt with all those who do not obey with the policy of isolation, use of force, disruption and aggression.
The American narrative is that those who oppose us are not human and are to be ignored and isolated.
There is no mention of any talks or negotiations. Samuel Huntington’s “Clash of Civilizations” idea is mostly out-dated now.
At the time, when the President of the United States Bill Clinton referred to it, the Iranian Premier wrote a letter to the President calling for “dialogue of Civilizations” instead of conflict, which was categorically rejected.
The same kind of narrative is being seen in the case of North Korea, Venezuela and Cuba. The disagreement with Washington has destroyed many nations.
Any who oppose the Americans are met with a Mafia like gangster approach. The head of the opposition is cut off.
For 20 years, in the words of Naom Chomsky, the Americans destroyed the Afghans, used them against the Soviets and after 20 years deserted them.
And now their funds, lying in American banks are being withheld. Similarly, in Iraq, the Americans destroyed all infrastructure, industry and commerce and now are sabotaging Iraq as an ally of Iran.
Such is the destruction that has followed American foreign policy of dominance. The world is coming to realize that China offers an alternative to American dominance.
The godfather is up to his old tricks. Chinese are beating the Americans at their own game.
Free market is favouring China. China is developing through regional connectivity, progress, development, investment and goodwill.
It has no intention of invading any nation or indulging in a military conflict with the Americans.
The US has been beaten economically. Its way of running the world is inefficient, violent and unilateral.
And this inefficient mechanism is not sustainable in the long run. This narrative is building up but the problem is once again in the saying, “the old godfather will not learn new tricks”.
And this is the reason that Americans are instigating a conflict with China. Recently, the imposition of sanctions and controversy in Taiwan is signaling that a clash is inevitable.
The disagreement is clear, the Chinese and its allies are not willing to obey to American wishes.
And if it comes to a military or cold war, the Chinese are economically and militarily equipped to give an existential threat to Americans and its allies.
It remains to be seen whether conflict is the only way forward or the declining superpower is willing to give a chance to negotiations, power-sharing and mutual respect.
—The writer is Chairman, Jinnah Rafi Foundation, based in Lahore.